“Crack! Thud!” …. Silence … murmuring voices… “Julie!”
It was late, I had been drifting off to sleep. I wondered what Reena (my 15 year old daughter) and Sam were doing working on the basement reno so late.
Sam was in the living room figuring out his new phone and ignored the noises – thinking it was Reena doing something.
It actually was Reena, but she wasn’t working on the reno. She had opened the freezer to get something and was almost hit by the ice falling off the lid.
Talia (our other daughter) slept through it all.
On Saturday morning, Sam was scraping the popcorn stuff off the ceiling of the basement where we are renovating. He moved the freezer out of the way to do it. We took Reena to her dance class and left from there for Calgary to see our granddaughter for a 24-hour visit.
Monday and Tuesdays were normal busy days. No one worked on the basement. No one needed anything from the freezer.
Late Tuesday night (11:30 pm or so) Reena opened the large chest freezer, came to get her dad – and then Sam called my name. As I came downstairs, after dragging myself awake, I was greeted with, “I broke the freezer.” Something had happened when Sam moved it on Saturday, and it had been off for over 3 days.
My first thought was of how much food was in it, particularly the whole lamb I had recently purchased from the farmer’s market. In the past when confronted with this sort of dilemma, I would panic or accuse, or any number of reactions.
Instead of reacting, I chose to live in the moment and be present to the now, not the what if or what was. I felt calm as I checked out the situation in the freezer. Surprisingly most of it was still quite frozen. (I do keep a lot of turkey broth like ice whiich must have helped.) I then went to assess the freezer upstairs to see what room we might have up there to rescue what was still frozen in the chest freezer. Especially if it was truly broken, as it was midnight and we couldn’t go buy a new one.
While I started moving and shifting the food, Sam looked at the problem of the pulled out wires to see if he could figure it out.
It was not what I wanted to do. It was not what Sam wanted to do, but it was here before us and needed to be done.
By the time I had made room and moved all the (still mostly solid) frozen meat and some not so frozen fruit upstairs, (If stacked neatly it is amazing how much you can get into the little freezer above the fridge.) Sam had used a blower to clean out the dust, and discovered a wire had been dislodged but not broken. He had located a possible place for it to go back in, which was, of course, difficult to get to. We managed to do it between the two of us – and plugged the freezer in and IT ACTUALLY RUMBLED BACK ON! Weren’t we surprised!
Okay. Now what. The thought came to me that those big ice chunks that were now loose could be taken out – an opportunity to clean out the years of built up ice or we could just leave it and I could go back to bed. I opened the freezer – and decided to act on the thought. So we worked together and got it done, and moved back downstairs a portion of the food I had taken upstairs. By the time we were done the whole little midnight adventure had only taken about an hour or so, and I felt a deep satisfaction and thankfulness.
And we thanked God: for Reena paying attention to what she was feeling as she went into the freezer and acting on it, for a good solid freezer that can keep food so cold for 4 days, that it now worked again, and that we were able to be present to the situation and do what needed to be done.
We were talking earlier that evening at our home group about what it looks like to walk everyday with Jesus. We talked about the need to listen to the nudging’s of the Holy Spirit, to live in the present moment as we work out our calling in some of the most ordinary, mundane parts of life.
It could have been a very different experience if we had reacted differently.
Is it all just a matter of perspective? Any thoughts?